Former NFL player and Alabama football standout, Wallace Gilberry, has announced his Republican candidacy for the U.S. House, representing Alabama’s newly-drawn 2nd Congressional District.
Gilberry, who says he grew up as a Democrat, formally launched his campaign on Wednesday, pledging to support former President Donald J. Trump’s agenda, and in the meantime, “fire Joe Biden.”
I’ve played on great teams – at Bama, 9 seasons in the NFL. Now, my team is you! I’m fighting to hold our Republican Majority and I need you on my team to do it! Join us today — https://t.co/wk7F6RWbtG pic.twitter.com/U8087Wvhep
— Wallace Gilberry (@WallaceGilberry) November 29, 2023
After a ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court that threw out the 2021 reapportionment map drawn by the Alabama Legislature, federally-imposed district lines will go into effect in 2024 that encompasses the 2nd Congressional District with a Black voting age population of 48.7% — intended to enhance competitiveness for the eventual Democratic nominee.
“A Black man is going to win this race – but it’ll be me, a conservative Republican who puts Alabama first,” Gilberry told FOX.
“My focus is on lifting up the people of Alabama. I’ve been blessed with incredible success, success that came from playing football. I’m running to have a platform to help create opportunities for young men who look like me that go beyond sports,” he said.
“More jobs at local businesses, helping entrepreneurs thrive, keeping our communities safe. In order to do that we have to get rid of career politicians, get rid of Joe Biden, and elect people focused on putting the people of Alabama first.”
Gilberry played defensive end for the Alabama Crimson Tide from 2004 to 2007. In the years since, he’s had an NFL career that’s brought him outsized longevity in professional sports, only recently retiring from the league in late 2017.
Gilberry’s journey began with the New York Giants as an undrafted free agent in 2008, before joining the Kansas City Chiefs later in the year. In 2011, during his time with the Chiefs, he earned a victory he can still appreciate to this day: Tackling New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.
“I’ve sacked Brady, Biden won’t be a problem,” he says.
The Alabama Republican Primary election will be held March 5, 2024.
Grayson Everett is the state and political editor for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @Grayson270